E-News Issue 171

Enews Issue 173

The organisers of this year's Avon Descent are excited at the amount of water flowing down the Avon River at the moment, and believe it will be one of the best years for the event for a while.  It is quite beautiful to see the froth of white water at the Extracts in Toodyay when driving home.

The Sustainable Agriculture team has been busy running workshops, the latest of which was the Perennial Grazing workshop. (see here).

If you are a community group involved in environmental activities in the Avon River Basin you may be interested in the Equipment Grants on offer by Wheatbelt NRM, funded by the State NRM Office.

This Sunday 20th July is a day to celebrate 25 years of Landcare.  See how Here.  Importantly, the National Landcare Program is undergoing a Senate Committee review, and your input has been requested.  See how HERE.

The Aboriginal NRM team has organised a workshop on Bushtucker Trials, read about it HERE.

An important workshop on the NRM Strategy will be hosted by Dr Elizabeth Kington and the Wheatbelt NRM Team on Friday 25th July.  Details here.

Kind Regards,

The Wheatbelt NRM Team

Perennial Grazing Workshops

Picture shows Roy Butler, Rod Butcher, Rex Luers and Dean Revell

The workshops, held in Kondinin and Merredin on the 3rd of July, were jam packed full information that the attending farmers found extremely valuable. The information presented by ‘Enrich’ project leader Dr Dean Revell ranged from the species used in the CRC FFI forage shrub research project, to the wool production and health benefits of using forage shrubs in your grazing systems. One interesting fact was that the shrubs were only ½ of the diet of sheep when in they were in the forage paddock; the inter-row grazing or supplementary feed makes up the other half.
Native grasses can be either planted as the inter-row pasture species or actively encouraged to recolonise the area by not adding fertiliser and not tilling the soil. Roy Butler’s (DAFWA) information on the value of different grass species was well received.
The workshops highlighted the production and NRM benefits that can be gained from integrating forage shrubs into Wheatbelt farming systems. For further information on forage shrubs, contact Jo Wheeler at Wheatbelt NRM on 9670 3121.


NRM Regional Strategy Workshop


The role of the Regional NRM strategy is to set broad priorities and establish a framework for informing investment in the region. Success will depend on the development and delivery of priority projects and it is at the local scale that decision-making occurs for action on-the-ground.
Wheatbelt NRM is holding a one-off workshop at our office and we invite interested community members to join its author Dr Elizabeth Kington and the Wheatbelt NRM team to review the strategy and its resilience theory approach.
Over 150 members of the Wheatbelt community were interviewed to capture their understanding of how the Wheatbelt system functions environmentally, economically and socially. These understandings and values have been combined with the technical knowledge of experts to give us strategies for management.
Join us in reviewing the use of resilience thinking and what parts of our system are at risk of crossing a threshold from which it is difficult to return from.
Date: Friday 25th July 
Time: 10.30
Place: Wheatbelt NRM Office, 269 Fitzgerald Street, Northam WA 6401
Or click here to register online

Search is on for the best feral photo


Across the nation the search is on for the best images of pest animals in action for Feral Photos, an annual photographic competition run by the Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre (IACRC).

“We want to raise awareness about the damage pest animals cause and photography is a powerful tool to get the message across. Through these images we can show the environmental, agricultural and social damage that pest animals cause across the country,” said Jessica Marsh, the IACRC’s National NRM Facilitator, who is hosted by the NSW Department of Primary Industries.

For more information go to: 



On the 13th AUGUST Wheatbelt NRM will be holding the first of 4 Bush Tucker Workshops at the Northam Office of DAFWA. The workshop is for Aboriginal and other people in the region who are interested in being involved in our Bush Tucker Trial Project. The Bush Tucker Trial Project will run over the next 4 years and involves establishing trial sites of up to 10 hectares on land that is either owned or able to be accessed by Aboriginal people. At the end of the project Aboriginal Land Mangers and the Aboriginal community will have the skills and knowledge necessary to propagate and produce Bush Tucker on a large (potentially commercial) scale.
An important aspect of the first workshop is providing an avenue for Aboriginal (Noongar) people to tell their own stories about their personal interest and aspirations for Bush Tucker. The workshop will be facilitated by Bevan Bessan of Tuna Blue Pty Ltd who has a strong rapport and reputation with our Aboriginal Land Mangers and Aboriginal people in general.
This is an exciting project and Wheatbelt NRM is keen for Aboriginal people to be involved in the workshop and the project in general. Through this and other projects in the Aboriginal NRM Program, Wheatbelt NRM continues to build strong ways of working with our Aboriginal Land Mangers and Aboriginal community.
If you would like more information about the workshop or the Bush Tucker Project in general, please contact either Kerry Horan ( or David Grasby ( on 08 9670 3100

Wheatbelt NRM Equipment Grants

Do you belong to a group that works with the community to undertake Landcare work?
Are you operating in the Avon River Basin?
Are you trying to build capacity within your group so that you are more sustainable into the future?
Do you need to buy equipment that will help your group undertake the work you do, support your administration or attract new volunteers and members?
Wheatbelt NRM has grants available for community groups to purchase equipment that will help their organisation grow and become more sustainable.
Grants are available up to a maximum of $1000
Consumable items such as seedlings as well as items such as fencing or herbicides are ineligible. This grant is for items that will benefit the operations of your group for the long term.
Enquiries to Jacquie Lucas, on 9670 3113 or email
Application forms are available from the Wheatbelt NRM website
Applications close Friday 22nd August 2014 @5pm.

 The history, effectiveness, performance and future of the National Landcare Program, including:

(a)     the establishment and performance of the Natural Heritage Trust;
(b)     the establishment and performance of the Caring for Our Country program;
(c)     the outcomes to date and for the forward estimates period of Caring for Our Country;
(d)     the implications of the 2014-15 Budget for land care programs, in particular, on contracts, scope, structure, outcomes of programs and long-term impact on natural resource management;
(e)     the Government's policy rationale in relation to changes to land care programs;
(f)      analysis of national, state and regional funding priorities for land care programs;
(g)     how the Department of the Environment and the Department of Agriculture have, and can, work together to deliver a seamless land care program;
(h)     the role of natural resource management bodies in past and future planning, delivery, reporting and outcomes; and
(i)      any other related matters.

The Committee invites you to provide a written submission addressing issues that may be of relevance to you. The submission should be lodged by 8 August 2014. The Committee prefers to receive submissions online as an attached document by accessing the committee website and selecting the Upload Submission Online link Alternatively, submissions may be emailed as an attached document to or mailed to the address below.

PO Box 6100, Parliament House Canberra ACT 2600 Tel: (02) 6277 3526 Fax: (02) 6277 5818

A Day in the Life of Landcare July 20th - be part of it!

Landcare means many different things to many people, so we need your help to show what a Day in the Life of Landcare looks like!

Get involved on July 20th by gathering with your fellow Landcarers and taking photos of what Landcare means to you. Get your photos into Landcare  by July 27th and they'll post your entries on Facebook, and later this year will publish a commemorative book.

For a step by step guide on how to get involved click here.
App in Focus



The Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) is interested in ensuring that farming can be made easier through a range of mobile based applications.
Our free mobile apps now allow you to undertake activities in the paddock and interact with your networks on your iPhone, iPad or Androidâ„¢ device.

Winter Cereal Nutrition: The Ute Guide
Field Peas: The Ute Guide
Insect ID: The Ute Guide
Weed ID: The Ute Guide

 For further  information and details on how to download please go HERE.


Conservation of natural heritage-Lotterieswest

When to apply

Applications can be made at any time.

Who can apply?

These grants are available to not-for-profit organisations and local government authorities.

What can we support?

Grants are provided to conserve natural habitats and maintain the diversity of animal and plant species. While projects can vary in their duration, they should have a start and end date.

Examples of what our grants have helped include:

  • Planting local species of trees and vegetation
  • Linking areas of vegetation with bush corridors (40 or more metres wide)
  • Preventing rising salt from destroying vegetation
  • Fencing remnant vegetation and wetlands
  • Controlling weeds, animals, disease and fire
  • Preparing newsletters, pamphlets or training to educate people about conservation
  • Providing the equipment needed for a conservation project

What we look for:

  • Community benefit and significance
  • Community access and support
  • Skills and capability to carry out the project
  • Planning and project management (before, during and after)
  • Adherence with conservation practices and standards
  • Consultation with stakeholders

Documents we need:

  • A completed Lotterywest Grant Application Form
  • Your latest Annual Report if you have one, or AGM minutes if you don’t and the most recent audited financial statements
  • A copy of your Constitution
  • Two written quotes for items over $3,000; a written estimate, advertised price, or one written quote for items under $3,000 (low value, miscellaneous items can be grouped together to $1,000)
  • A project plan and budget
  • A catchment management plan (if relevant)

If your group is unincorporated, there are other things we need from you.

For details and application forms please go to the Lotterieswest website.

People's Choice in National Landcare Nominations

You can vote HERE up until 16th September 2014.

Go WA!!

Australian Rural Leaders Program: for established Leaders

The ARLP aims to produce a network of informed, capable and ethical leaders who are able to work collaboratively to advance the interests of their industries, businesses, communities and rural Australia in general.   

Applications close 29th of August, 2014.

For more information click here. 

Upcoming Events

ABARES Regional Outlook Conferences

ABARES is pleased to announce the dates and locations for its 2014 Regional Outlook conferences.

Held across Australia, the seven Regional Outlook conferences bring ABARES commodity forecasts and analysis to regional Australia.

At each conference ABARES economists will deliver commodity forecasts and research results, followed by a range of local producers, industry representatives and business people as well as meet and discuss issues relevant to your region. The conference program includes forecasts for key agricultural commodities, an economic overview, local challenges such as labour and water issues and case studies from regional business people who are taking innovative approaches.

The Regional Outlook conferences follow from the national Outlook 2014 conference in Canberra with its theme of Realising the opportunities.

Delegates include farmers and other producers, bankers, consultants and other service providers, rural counsellors, local business owners, state and local government staff and others with an interest in their region. Be a part of a Regional Outlook conference in your area.  The Western Australian event is on Thursday 21st August in Albany.


You're invited to a Bush Camp Out and "Busy Bee' 

helping to connect up Gondwana Link - a great opportunity to spend time in our beautiful south coast bush 'doing something for conservation'. Evening meals and wine provided - attendance by donation.  For further information and registration form click here.

Controlled traffic farming conference

August 26 – 29

CTF 2014 will present the expertise and experience of farmers, engineers and scientists from grain, vegetable and fodder industries across Australia. With a general theme around low rainfall zone farming, other important aspects of CTF will also be explored in interactive sessions with plenty of time for questions.

Click here for more information

Perth Sheep Updates

Date: 30th of July 2014
Location: University of WA, Crawley.

The theme for the conference will be "Sheep genetics - getting the most benefit from your flock".

For more details, click here. 

WANTFA Long Term Cropping Systems and Soil Health Day 

Thursday 25 September 2014 at the Long Term trial site in Cunderdin.

The event will showcase the Long Term Cropping Systems Trials and associated research and an Action on the Ground Carbon Farming Trial that is located at the site. Enquiries:David Minkey (Executive Director WANTFA): 0417 999 304 |


National Landcare Conference

Date: 17-19th September 2014
Venue: Crown Conference Centre, Melbourne

This year’s National Landcare Conference promises to be an exciting celebration of 25 years of Landcare as a national program with a focus on the future and what this means for Landcare, with a program based on the theme – Celebrating our history – growing our future.

For more details, click here
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